Pipeline Accidents in Houston

oil field and workers at night

Working on pipelines – whether construction, maintenance, or monitoring – is an inherently hazardous job. And when companies in Houston and throughout the state of Texas turn a blind eye to safety, the chance of injury increases significantly.

If you have been hurt in a pipeline accident in Houston or elsewhere in Texas, whether on the job or as a bystander, you should not have to shoulder the financial burden alone. A Houston pipeline accident lawyer can help you hold the pipeline company, construction company, or other responsible entity accountable for the harm you have suffered.

For over 25 years, the attorneys of The Callahan Law Firm have fought for the rights of people injured by the negligence of others. We represent individuals and families when they need it most. Our firm purposely limits the number of cases we handle so that we can provide our clients and their cases the time and attention they deserve. Unlike many law firms that try to sign as many clients as possible, we believe each case is unique and strive to take a tailored approach to the cases we accept.

If you have been injured in a Houston pipeline accident, an experienced personal injury attorney from our firm can help you seek compensation and accountability from the responsible parties. It is important to keep in mind that you have one chance to get justice, so choosing the right law firm is critical.

Reach out to The Callahan Law Firm now for a free initial case evaluation.

Common Causes of Pipeline Accidents in Houston

Pipeline companies and their contractors should take every reasonable step to prevent injuries. And when they don’t, pipeline workers and their families are the ones who suffer the consequences. Common causes of pipeline accidents include:

  • Negligent operation of equipment including pipelayers, side booms and dozers
  • Trench collapse
  • Fires and explosions due to flammable fumes, gases, or other chemicals combined with high heat from welding arcs or other ignition sources
  • Welding mishaps including electrical shocks, and exposure to fumes or gases
  • Weld failure
  • Material failure of pipe, fittings, valves, or other components because of a product defect, material fatigue, or other cause
  • Equipment failure including compressors, pumps, valves, and pipeline monitoring systems
  • Corrosion of the pipeline or its components, whether external or internal
  • Exposure to hot metals, fumes, gases, and chemicals
  • Motor vehicle accidents involving company work trucks, tractor-trailers, or other work vehicles
  • Inadequate training
  • Failure to follow established safety policies and procedures
  • Negligence of a pipeline subcontractor
  • Negligent response to reported pipeline leaks

Common Injuries Sustained in Pipeline Accidents in Houston

Any negligence or carelessness in the workplace combined with the inherent dangers of pipeline work can be a recipe for catastrophic injuries. Some of the most common injuries suffered by people involved in pipeline accidents include:

  • Burn injuries
  • Crush injuries
  • Traumatic brain injuries (TBI)
  • Fractures, whether extremities, spinal or cranial
  • Spinal cord injuries
  • Amputations
  • Respiratory injuries
  • Fatal injuries

Who Can Be Held Liable for a Houston Pipeline Accident?

Depending on the causes and circumstances of a pipeline accident, one or more parties may be liable for your injuries and damages. Potentially at-fault parties in Houston pipeline accident cases can include:

  • The pipeline company responsible for the safe operation of the pipeline
  • Third-party contractors responsible for construction, installation, testing, and maintenance of the pipeline
  • Manufacturers of pipe, fittings, valves, and other equipment who can be held liable for design or manufacturing defects
  • Construction companies who damage pipelines while doing unrelated excavation or construct work

Potentially Recoverable Damages in Pipeline Accident Claims

If you or a loved one have been hurt in a pipeline accident, you may have several options for compensation for your injuries and damages. For example, if you are injured on the job and your employer carries workers’ compensation insurance, you have the right to make a claim under that system. Workers’ compensation benefits can include one or more of the following:

  • Medical benefits that should pay medical providers to treat your injuries
  • Temporary income benefits that partially replace wages when you miss time from work
  • Impairment income benefits that provide financial payments for permanent disabilities you suffer

If your workplace injury happened because of the negligence of a third party (not your employer or a co-worker) or if you were injured as an innocent bystander in a pipeline accident you may have the right to pursue a third-party claim for your damages. In a third-party personal injury claim, damages include one or more of the following:

  • Medical care expenses, in the past and future
  • Loss of income, in the past and future, as well as loss of earning capacity which is a loss of the ability to do the work you once could but no longer can do because of your injury
  • Pain and suffering, in the past and future
  • Physical impairment, in the past and future
  • Mental anguish, in the past and future
  • Disfigurement
  • Loss of consortium, which is the loss of the love and affection of another because of an injury
  • Exemplary damages are meant to punish the wrongdoer in cases involving gross negligence

When there is a loss of life because of a pipeline accident, the surviving family should consult an experienced pipeline accident attorney to discuss a wrongful death claim and/or a survival claim which can include damages for one or more of the following:

  • Medical expenses to treat the decedent’s fatal injuries
  • Funeral and burial expenses
  • Loss of the decedent’s earnings in the past and future
  • Loss of inheritance
  • Loss of the decedent’s services and support to the household
  • Loss of the decedent’s love, affection, companionship, and comfort
  • Emotional pain and anguish suffered by the decedent and by surviving family members

How Our Houston Pipeline Accident Lawyers Can Help

If you or a loved one have been injured because of a pipeline accident, the attorneys at The Callahan Law Firm can help you pursue the financial recovery you and your family are legally entitled to by:

  • Instructing responsible parties to preserve critical evidence
  • Hiring accident reconstruction and engineering experts to inspect the scene and review evidence to determine how the accident happened and why
  • Documenting your injuries and losses to support your claim for compensation
  • Ensuring you understand your legal options and what to expect throughout your case
  • Filing a lawsuit and developing your case for full and fair compensation, whether through settlement or trial
  • Taking your case to trial when necessary and presenting the jury with the full story of what happened, why it happened, and the losses sustained so that justice can be done

Contact Our Experienced Pipeline Accident Attorneys Today

At The Callahan Law Firm, we understand how devastating injuries resulting from pipeline accidents can be. We’re ready to start work on your case immediately with the goal of getting full justice for you and your family. Contact us today for a free, no-obligation consultation to discuss your case with one of our experienced pipeline accident attorneys.

Workplace Injury

What Should I Do After a Workplace Accident?

To protect your interest and your legal rights, you should take the following steps after a workplace accident occurs:

  1. Seek medical attention immediately.
  2. Verbally notify your employer about the accident as soon as possible.
  3. As soon as possible and ithin 30 days, report the accident to your employer in writing and keep a copy of the notification for yourself.
  4. Contact an experienced workplace accident attorney to discuss your legal options, which may include bringing a personal injury action, a workers’ compensation claim, or both, depending on your situation.
  5. Keep track of your time off from work, medical bills, and healthcare records.
  6. Follow your physician’s treatment plan.

Types of Workplace Injury Cases Our Law Firm Handles

The trial lawyers at The Callahan Law Firm represent injured workers in a wide array of workplace accidents, including:

Do I Need a Workplace Injury Lawyer?

Pursuing worker’s comp benefits without legal assistance can be complex and challenging, particularly when recovering from a severe injury. Retaining the services of a skilled attorney can provide the help you need to ensure you receive maximum compensation under Texas labor law.

If your employer does not have workers’ compensation coverage, or when a third party is responsible for your accident and injuries, the assistance of an experienced workplace accident lawyer is essential. Your attorney will investigate the facts of the incident to determine what happened and why, work to preserve and gather critical evidence, hire the appropriate experts, and take the necessary legal steps including filing a personal injury lawsuit against the responsible parties.

What’s the Statute of Limitations for Filing a Workplace Injury Lawsuit?

The general rule, under Texas statutes, requires you to file a personal injury workplace accident lawsuit that is based on negligence within two years of the date of the incident. You may lose your right to pursue a claim if you miss the deadline. For this reason, it is important to consult with a workplace accident lawyer as soon as possible. You’ll discover the proper statute of limitations for filing your claim and which legal path will optimize your financial recovery.

Can I Claim Workers’ Comp Benefits If I Was in an Accident at Work?

If your employer has workers’ compensation insurance and you were injured on the job, then under Texas law you can make a workers’ compensation claim and are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits.

If your employer does not have workers’ compensation insurance (is a non-subscriber) and you were injured on the job, your employer will only be required to pay for your medical care, lost wages and other damages, if you can prove that your employer’s negligence caused your injuries.

If the negligence of a third-party (someone other than your employer) caused your injuries, a claim can be made against that third-party for your damages including medical care expenses, lost income, pain and suffering, physical impairment, mental anguish and other damages.

Depending on the facts of what happened, you may have the right to compensation from multiple sources, including workers’ compensation benefits as well as a lawsuit against the company(ies) that caused or contributed to your injuries and damages.